An open letter to Marvel / Incredible Hulk Movie Review

Dear Marvel,

You are no longer allowed to make movies of any of the following properties ever, EVER again unless I have approved your script:

– The Fantastic Four
– Spider Man
– The Incredible Hulk
– Daredevil
– Elektra

While the Incredible Hulk movie was a vast improvement over the drek that passed as a Hulk film the last time, I still felt that your offering was sorely lacking. I will admit that the casting this time around was terrific compared to the lackluster performances given by the other crop of actors in the first Hulk film. Ed Norton was an excellent Bruce Banner, and Liv Tyler’s Betty Ross was superior to the one portrayed by Jennifer “Dead in the Water” Connelly.

However, cast alone does not a movie make. The film felt overly long and its action scenes contrived. I realize that you had to throw in the gratuitous “Hulk Smash!!” line to make fanboys cream in their shorts. I am fine with that. I even enjoyed the one or two jokes you sprinkled throughout the film, such as Bruce Banner refusing to wear purple pants and the nod to television’s Hulk with a cameo by Lou Ferrigno.

This brings me to how dry the film was. Mind you, when I go to see the Incredible Hulk, I’m not expecting a large, green, one-man version of “Dumb and Dumber” (although, pairing up Hulk and Abomination in doing something like this might make for a more interesting movie). Nevertheless, it would be nice if there was something to break things up besides Bruce Banner globe-hopping all over the place and somehow becoming a Brazillian Jiu Jitsu master. I was half expecting to see a giant map of where Hulk/Banner had been show up at the end of the credits. Oh, and thanks for making me stay until the end of the credits and giving me absolutely nothing. No Samuel L. Jackson cameo. No hint of things to come with the Avengers. Just another five minutes of my time wasted.

Don’t get me wrong. “The Incredible Hulk” was not entirely unpleasant. It was just mediocre. Perhaps a little below mediocre. It was slow, plodding, and devoid of any real depth of character. Kind of like a caper-type film that traveled from place to place. While it didn’t infuriate me or make me want to harm myself while watching the movie much like “Spiderman 3″ did, I have to admit that I enjoyed the “Sex and the City” movie I saw last weekend more than I did “The Incredible Hulk.” Sure, I had several ounces of potent alcohol coursing through my bloodstream, but I think even if I had that same amount of hooch at my disposal for “Hulk,” it probably wouldn’t have helped and I’d still have enjoyed the film about four females battling with their sexual self-control much more than a gamma-addled giant who battled with his own, more generalized self-control.

I noticed by the way you inserted pre-transformation cannon characters like Doc Samson and the guy who will become Leader, that you probably intend on torturing me with another Hulk movie. It may be good, it may suck to high hell. While this Hulk got better than the previous one, I will give you the benefit of the doubt that you may hit your stride with this franchise yet! Or, it could take a turn for the Spiderman and get exponentially worse.

I think what I’m going to do is just stick to what I know with Marvel comic book films and be more discriminating with which ones I see in theatres. I have yet to be disappointed by your X-Men films or Iron Man — and hell, I’m not even wild about the character/comic Iron Man, but that was a damn near masterpiece.

Unless Willy Wonka hands me a golden ticket to the movie theatre to see the next Hulk film, I will probably wait to see it on DVD.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
~ Me

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